Three Poems • Howie Good


I climbed the thirteen stone steps. The sky was tilting from red toward black. You can’t find God if God doesn’t want to be found.

A man was strangling a woman on TV. My father said it’s OK if someone hits you to hit back. It was kind of good that our cat and dog had congruent philosophies.

I stayed up all night writing. I knew a lot of words. I should have been amazingly grateful. I wasn’t.


La Petite Mort
for Jones

I am to you as shadow
to shadowy blue,

and love is
the plump girl

who takes ballet
after school.

I have Mozart on.
All the windows are open.

From bushes and trees,
birds sing to each other,

sadly ambitious.

Animal noises in the night
and our bodies twisting together,
a kind of thunderstorm blue,

and then untwisting from within
like the surface of a mirror
rippled by a stranger’s breath.


Notes of a Very Minor Poet 

Flood me, Lord, as they flood
played-out coal mines,
get Franz Wright to accept
my Friend Request,
but, first of all, answer the door.


I don’t like cats,
but a dog might be good company.
I could take it on long walks,
feed it from my plate,
name it for a famous dead author.

You don’t get poetry.
The words are just words to you,

empty boots in the stirrups
of a riderless horse,

an unheard forecast for sunshine later.


Howie Good, a journalism professor at SUNY New Paltz, is the author of the full-length poetry collections Lovesick (Press Americana, 2009), Heart With a Dirty Windshield (BeWrite Books, 2010), and Everything Reminds Me of Me (Desperanto, 2011), as well as numerous print and digital poetry chapbooks, including most recently Love in a Time of Paranoia from Diamond Point Press, Inspired Remnants from Red Ceilings Press and The Penalty for Trying from Ten Pages Press.